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    • #132447

      Hi all,

      Warning: this contains triggering and graphic content, so I hope this is ok.

      I’m going through a really tough time, feeling utterly bemused and ashamed of myself for being so naive and stupid, so please no judgement. I know I should have run a mile ages ago, but I didn’t, and I need help and advice now.

      (Detail removed by moderator) ago I came out of an abusive relationship with a man who almost made me lose my mind by constant gaslighting, name calling and threats. It was truly horrendous and I never thought I would ever fall for it again. But I did. And I can’t believe it. I really need some help here as I feel worse than I did the first time round.

      I know I have an issue with men, because my dad (detail removed by moderator). When I was (detail removed by moderator) I tracked him down and he rejected me again. So here I am today, fully aware of my issues relating to emotionally unavailable, cruel men but seemingly unable to break free of the pattern.

      Back in (detail removed by moderator) I got together with a man I kind of knew from my home town about (detail removed by moderator) ago. From day one, I knew he had issues, but the attraction was huge, and he said (detail removed by moderator) even though we didn’t know each other well. The love bombing was intense – he said (detail removed by moderator) and he’d never felt this way before.

      He has (detail removed by moderator)  but also clearly lots of other complex issues. (Detail removed by moderator) and his dad couldn’t cope, so he was left to cry alone. Red flag number one.

      His dad died (detail removed by moderator), and his mum married another man (detail removed by moderator). She left him and his brother to pretty much fend for themselves, and he went into a life of drink and drugs very early on. Then his mum died (detail removed by moderator).

      He’s highly intelligent, very handsome, often very kind, but incredibly messed up. He hasn’t worked in about(detail removed by moderator) and has no money. He’s in a lot of emotional pain, and instead of running a mile, being an empath (and stupid) I kept trying to take his pain away.

      The past (detail removed by moderator) have been hell. He’s needy, to the point of calling me (detail removed by moderator) every day during my working day, then often again in the evening, (detail removed by moderator). He shouts and rants down the phone and I can’t get a word in edgeways. I didn’t set clear boundaries, so although it was stressful I dropped everything to help him and listen to all his issues. Not once did I think about my own mental and physical wellbeing throughout all this.

      We have never been on a proper date except (detail removed by moderator) we went out. Instead, we’ve sat in his bedroom talking about his family, his (imaginary) physical illnesses, and the fact that he thinks (detail removed by moderator). He talks constantly about himself and I don’t think he knows very much about me at all, because I never have room to talk.

      He smokes a lot of weed, apparently to help with his (detail removed by moderator), but it’s clearly caused some sort of psychosis that he’s in complete denial about. He sees a therapist but insists that’s just for his (detail removed by moderator) and family trauma and he won’t discuss anything else about his mental health, which he insists is fine!

      This past few months, things have got much worse. He insists he’s seen (detail removed by moderator). He screams and shouts a lot of the time. He criticises my behaviour often, saying (detail removed by moderator). Nothing I do is right – apparently(detail removed by moderator). He does tell me I’m beautiful and wonderful regularly, but then he acts in ways that suggest he feels the complete opposite.

      Sex has been probably the biggest problem, and the one I’m most ashamed about. Again, I can’t believe I have allowed this to happen. Before he met me, he was meeting women online to engage in S&M. He said (detail removed by moderator)(red flag number 1,000!) After a while he said he would like to try with me, (detail removed by moderator). This quickly descended into a sub/dom situation which totally killed my self esteem and has left me feeling like I can’t be assertive about anything anymore. (Detail removed by moderator) and this can last for hours. The only real way he can get turned on is by strangling/choking and total domination. He likes forcing me to go down, and I’m only allowed to orgasm if I ask permission first. It’s messed with my head to a point where I don’t know if my mind is my own anymore.

      We have talked about this many times and I’ve said I don’t like it, and asked for just “normal” love making. He’s agreed to stop and made all the right noises, then slipped straight back into it again. These sessions go on for hours, often (detail removed by moderator).

      After all this pain and trauma, on (detail removed by moderator) he ended our relationship because he said (detail removed by moderator). He says (detail removed by moderator), so he ended things brutally and suddenly. I feel utterly worthless. I have invested so much time, effort, money and emotion into this person, and pretty much the entire experience has been miserable. But I’m completely trauma bonded and don’t know how to move forward.

      I cannot believe I have allowed myself to get into this situation, particularly after the last one. Why am I only attracted to toxic, n**********c men who can’t give me what I need? (I know the answer, but can’t seem to make myself better). I know I’m a bright, attractive woman. I run my own business, people say I’m confident, funny, friendly and kind. I just don’t know how to be kind to myself!

      Please someone help me and tell me this will feel better soon.

    • #132448

      What I just read made me feel physically sick, I can so feel your pain and distress. I know how you feel as I have been in a remarkably similar situation, and only left (detail removed by moderator). He had (detail removed by moderator), depression and was an alcoholic. When we met, I was the woman he’d been looking for, he was so charismatic, charming, attentive and god d****t so good looking. I fell for him so hard. In our time together, he never took me out, and I mean that literally. Not one date. Our time was spent on his sofa watching TV and talking about him. He knows next to nothing about me, and my life was spent trying to understand him, help him , soothe him, forgive him. He had a lot of mental health issues too, yet he frequently told everything wrong with our relationship was down to me – I was mentally unstable, needed therapy(detail removed by moderator).

      I can’t keep going right now as its too painful. But please know that you are not alone in this, and I hope there are some women on here who can provide you with some sound advice. Sending love and strength your way xx

      • #132457

        Hi, I’m so sorry to read what your going through, what you have endured. I think that’s the right word to describe the hellish situation you were in, are in? Are having to face up to having been in, now, as a result of being in that relationship. I do hope for you, that you receive much support here and outside of this place. Take care of yourself and be kind to yourself, love yourself now.

    • #132471

      I look at your title “How have I let this happen again?”

      I’m so sorry for everything you talk about.

      But you did not let this happen, you didn’t. It didn’t happen because you did something wrong.

      it happened to you. You’ve shown courage and kindness and there’s no shame in loving someone that hurts you. I think a lot of us do.

      How could you not struggle with so much grief? It makes sense.

      It will get easier to love yourself as the fog of immediate trauma lifts.

      ╰(*°▽°*)╯ (I think that’s a chick emoji sending a hug but can’t be sure)

    • #132475
      Wants To Help

      Hi there,

      Your user name gave me a wry smile, you’re certainly not alone with how you feel, but I don’t for one moment think that’s what you are.

      This man actually sounds like a sexual predator and his behaviour is very concerning. It’s not uncommon to try and please our partners by trying out their sexual fantasies, but when their fantasies increasingly get worse we wonder where the boundaries got blurred.

      Strangulation techniques are very dominant ways of showing what power they have over you – they literally show you that your life is in their hands and it is only through their control they allow you to live.

      I think you do understand that his issues are something that you cannot help him with no matter how hard you try. He is manipulating you that he can only cope with life because of you, but he was not coping with life and never will unless he faces his issues and seeks help for them.

      You are going through the sunk cost fallacy at the moment (read the recent post by eggshells) and trying to mentally justify there must be something to come out of all of the time and money you have invested in him. The only thing to come out of it is the reality he is not good for you, never was and never will be.

      My advice to you is to take as much time out of any relationship with men as possible and get counselling, support work, spend time with your girl friends, join a new group, throw yourself in to your business and do things to focus on you now.

      You have been manipulated, tricked, conned and betrayed by a man who claimed to love you. You have nothing to feel foolish about, ashamed of or guilty. Praise yourself that you are now free of him.

    • #132500

      Thanks everyone. Can’t see how to reply to individual comments so just know I really appreciate them all and know that what I really need right now is to surround myself with wonderful, strong women like you!

      He phoned (removed by moderator) and we were on the phone for almost (removed by moderator) hours. As usual he dominated the conversation then ended it by saying it had taken up to much of his time. This was the norm; he’d call me, rant on for hours without giving me many spaces to say my stuff, then say he didn’t have time to be on the phone all day!

      I felt physically and mentally exhausted by the end of the call, which was pretty much how I always felt in his company.

      He’s coming here in a few days to give me my things back/take his. He said “(removed by moderator)” Then he said he might need to borrow some money so he doesn’t go under..

      He told he he really loves me but I get on his nerves because I’m too untidy and we fundamentally don’t get on. He repeatedly said how we were (removed by moderator) there, but he needs (removed by moderator) to be happy. Then he said how I was always too compliant, before in the next breath saying it could never have worked because we were “(removed by moderator)”. Everything he says is a contradiction.

      My brain hurts, my skin is tingling and I feel sick. I don’t want him back but think it’s the rejection that’s doing me in the most. And yes, sunk cost fallacy makes a lot of sense!

      Thanks for being here to keep me vaguely sane x

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